Current as of March 18, 2009
Today the Budget and Control Board ordered a prospective 2-percent additional across-the-board reduction to all agencies’ appropriations, which will become effective in five days unless the General Assembly makes targeted cuts equal to the $102 million that would be saved by the 2 percent across-the-board reduction.
The 2-percent reduction would equal $391,462 for Winthrop, assuming the percentage is being applied to the remaining base appropriation following cuts earlier in the year.
The prospective cut was approved 3-1, with Governor Mark Sanford, who chairs the board, absent. Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom voted against the plan, indicating his displeasure that the General Assembly is not reducing spending enough in the current economic circumstances. Senate Finance Chairman Hugh Leatherman then made it clear that it would take at least 4-6 weeks to agree on ways to balance the current fiscal year’s budget with additional cuts, and noted that the later in the year any cuts are imposed, the more difficult it is for agencies to absorb them.
As noted yesterday, the good work done to date to achieve operating efficiencies should allow Winthrop to absorb the 2 percent reduction by staying on our present course. Should larger targeted cuts be adopted, we would have to re-evaluate our options.
We will keep you posted of any additional developments in the week ahead.